2019 Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk
Supply: Fiat Chrysler
The principal chief of the Cherokee Nation desires Jeep to cease utilizing the tribe’s identify on its SUVs, saying it “doesn’t honor us by having our identify plastered on the aspect of a automotive.”
Jeep began utilizing the Cherokee identify greater than 45 years in the past, together with on the model’s top-selling Grand Cherokee SUV. It additionally provides a smaller SUV known as the Cherokee, which was its third best-selling car final 12 months within the U.S.
“I feel we’re in a day and age on this nation the place it is time for each firms and group sports activities to retire the usage of Native American names, photos and mascots from their merchandise, group jerseys and sports activities usually,” Chuck Hoskin Jr., principal chief of the Cherokee Nation, mentioned in an announcement. “I am certain this comes from a spot that’s well-intended, however it doesn’t honor us by having our identify plastered on the aspect of a automotive.
2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee L
Hoskin’s assertion was initially despatched to Automobile and Driver in response to an inquiry about whether or not the tribe condoned Jeep utilizing the Cherokee identify on the automobiles. Julie Hubbard, a spokeswoman for the Cherokee Nation, mentioned Hoskin additionally informed Jeep, which is now part of Stellantis, that he doesn’t condone the usage of the Cherokee identify throughout a cellphone name final month with no less than one firm official.
“One of the simplest ways to honor us is to study our sovereign authorities, our position on this nation, our historical past, tradition and language and have significant dialogue with federally acknowledged tribes on cultural appropriateness,” Hoskin mentioned.
In an emailed assertion, Jeep mentioned its car names “have been fastidiously chosen and nurtured over time to honor and rejoice Native American individuals for his or her the Aristocracy, prowess, and delight. The corporate mentioned it’s greater than ever “dedicated to a respectful and open dialogue with Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin, Jr.”
Hoskin’s criticism follows a number of corporations and sports activities groups stopping the usage of model names and logos that used ethnic stereotypes and caricatures. They’ve included meals manufacturers similar to Aunt Jemima and Uncle Ben’s altering names or packaging in addition to Land O’ Lakes eradicating the picture of a Native American girl from its packaging. Sports activities groups, together with Main League Baseball’s Cleveland Indians and the Nationwide Soccer League’s Washington Redskins, are additionally dropping Native American imagery and names from their franchises.
Jeep has bought the Grand Cherokee since 1992. A brand new era of the car, together with a three-row variant, is predicted later this 12 months. The corporate first began utilizing Cherokee on automobiles in 1974, in keeping with Automobile and Driver. After discontinuing the Cherokee identify in 2002, it reintroduced a car with that identify in 2013.
At the moment, a spokeswoman for Cherokee Nation informed the New York Instances that the tribe had “inspired and applauded faculties and universities for dropping offensive mascots,” however “institutionally, the tribe doesn’t have a stance on” the Jeep Cherokee. She mentioned Jeep didn’t seek the advice of the Cherokee Nation earlier than asserting the car.